The last time an One-Day International was played at the iconic Eden Gardens, it was an absolute run fest. Batting first during the third ODI earlier this year, England had scored 321 while India replied with 316. However, there is a big possibility that the fans will not witness another such game when the Men in Blue take on Australia in the second match of the ongoing five-match series scheduled to be played in Kolkata on Thursday (September 21).
With heavy rains lashing the city since Sunday night (September 17), East Zone curator Ashish Bhowmick has stated that ball would come on to the bat slowly if the weather does not improve. The ground staff was forced to keep Eden Gardens pitch under covers the entire evening until the afternoon due to the showers.
“If it pours, the way it did today (Monday), and we have to keep the pitch under covers, the ball will come on to the bat slow,” Bhowmick said.
Meanwhile, if the pitch remains under cover for longer, it will only make life difficult for the Australia batsmen who struggled to deal with Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav in the series-opener. Kuldeep was taken to the cleaners in one over by Glenn Maxwell but barring that the visiting batsmen had a tough day out against the Indian spinners as they took 5 of the nine wickets that fell.
The rain can also play spoilsport in the game as Met department has not ruled out its possibility on the match day.
But weather aside, Eden Gardens pitch curator Sujan Mukherjee claimed the track would be sporting and aid both batsmen and bowlers.
“The wicket will help both batsmen and bowlers. We are ready and conditions are ideal for one-day cricket,” Mukherjee said.
The hosts are leading the five-match series by 1-0 after the 26-run win (DLS method) in the first game. Batting first, India posted 283 for 7. In reply, the visitors, while chasing a revised total of 164 in 21 overs, managed to score only 137 for 9.